Cultural Immersion: High Schoolers Study Abroad
Like most high schoolers, incoming college freshman Brooke Sabina has a celebrity crush. “I am obsessed with Henry VIII,” she confesses. “I literally have a poster in my room of him. It says, ‘Henry VIII Dating Services: If You’ve Ever Lost Your Head Over a Man.’ It’s pretty much my most prized possession.”
Unlike most high schoolers, high school junior Bim Peacock has traveled to the Caribbean several times and is looking for more overseas adventures. “I’ve been wanting so bad to travel to Europe and the Middle East,” he says.
Her passion for history and his love of traveling came together in “The Land and Literature of England” high school study abroad trip. Every June, talented high school students gather on Hillsdale’s campus for several days packed full with lectures by Hillsdale College faculty on John Milton, William Shakespeare, and Jane Austen. The group then jets off for two weeks of sight-seeing and more lectures.
“The professors are a lot more animated here,” says Bim. “One professor gave his history lecture like he was telling a story, like he was talking about something his friends did last week. That helps me grasp the material much better.”
Bim’s enthusiasm echoes hundreds of students’ who spent their summers traveling and learning with the high school study abroad program. “There are so many reasons why students should apply to this program,” says Zack Miller, Senior Director of Admissions. “Students get to experience what it’s like to be a college student with real Hillsdale College faculty. They form longtime friendships with peers across the country. They’re traveling to Europe with the expertise of our faculty members whose knowledge of Europe gives students a first-class glance into the sites visited. Plus, students earn three college credits—and the price of the trip includes those credits. You can’t beat that.”
Both Bim and Brooke think more high schoolers should take this opportunity to travel and study.
“When you’re learning a language, you have to immerse yourself in that culture,” Bim says. “That’s the only way you can adopt that language.”
“English literature and history are the same way,” adds Brooke.
“Exactly. The point of studying abroad is to be immersed in the culture that influenced the writers you’re reading—immersing yourself in their language, if you will.”